Manitou Springs has agreed to a lease-purchase agreement to buy 99 acres of Iron Mountain for open space, and its City Council is hoping to get grant funds to go toward the purchase price of $1.1 million.
Tom McGee, the property owner, had been legally embroiled with the city over access issues to a development that he hoped to build. An access road to any home sites (seven were envisioned) would have crossed city property, and Manitou was resistant to the idea of building a road, due to impacts. McGee sued.
This weekend, McGee said he'd be willing to settle his suit against the city if the city purchased his property, which includes a home. Council agreed, giving its consent in special emergency meetings held over the weekend and yesterday.
The city has yet close on the property.
"Manitou will move heaven and earth to find the financing to do this," Mayor Pro Tem Aimee Cox says. "It's been a high priority for a long time .. It's a key part of our backdrop; it will help us possibly complete the Intemann Trail."
Cox adds that the main reason Manitou started its open space program was to buy this property.